Be like the energizer bunny

 

Want to increase your energy? Read below for a simple exercise that will help you identify what activities and habits you can include in your day to feel refreshed and ready to take on your day!

 

This post originally appeared in my weekly newsletter – a Sunday morning email that shares mindful moments, health tips, and interesting news to make you smile. Sign up to receive yours, and be sure to share with a friend! 

 

The situation:

How does this compare to your normal day?

Wake up, get the kids ready for school, sip down a quick breakfast, rush to work, do that work all day, rush home, take care of errands or kids, maybe fit in a quick workout, watch an hour of television and then fall into bed. Rinse and repeat.

Probably sounds pretty familiar.

In that routine, I see a lot of energy out, and not a whole lot of energy in.

 

I had a client asked me recently “what is me-time?”, and I realized that our national energy deficit is pretty serious.

 

Unfortunately, this constantly drained energy also manifests in fatigue and disease.

 

As a natural giver, I understand what you’re doing. You want to support your aging parents, your growing kids, and be the best boss you can be. You’re checking off all of the boxes for others, but unfortunately not the ones for yourself.

 

Laws governing energy:

If you’ll let me channel my former life as a chemical engineer, I believe that the secret to energy management relates to the First Law of Thermodynamics:

 

Energy is not created or destroyed, only transferred.

 

That means that if you want to have an energy reserve in your body, you have to be putting more in than you’re taking out.

 

If you’re not consistently making deposits in the energy bank, you’re going to run out real quick.

 

My hypothesis about increasing energy:

 

One thing that I’ve been realizing lately is that refreshing your energy takes a lot of intention. Sure, you might be going to yoga a few times a week or turning off your work email on the weekends, but is it done with clear intention of refreshing your energy?

 

I was working with one of my own coaches recently, and he said he devotes time to reading, learning, and decompressing because “I have to grow and advance as much or faster than my clients.” Similarly, as my yoga teaching and coaching load has grown, I’ve found that I need to spend more time reading, practicing yoga, being quiet, and investing in myself, and being intentional about these activities.

 

What’s your first reaction to this? For many people – the first impulse is “but I don’t have time!” In actuality, the barrier most of us are facing is that we don’t know what to do in order to refresh our energy.

 

Gaining energy is about more than time. It’s about knowing what to do in the first place.

 

If you feel tired, overwhelmed, or stressed more than you’d like to admit, take out a journal or a fresh word document, and check out this week’s assignment.

 

Your assignment to help you increase energy:

Here are a few questions to help you figure out what would be count as an energy deposit in your life:

  1. What activities/situations bring a smile to your face?
  2. What are you always glad you did after you finish?
  3. What is a simple hobby/activity you enjoyed as a child?
  4. What is a simple hobby/activity you enjoyed as a young adult?
  5. What physical movement (dance, walking, yoga, boxing, soccer) brings you happiness?
  6. What things do you currently do just out of enjoyment?
  7. What makes you laugh most?

 

At this stage of the game, don’t worry about when, how, where. Start with pinning down those activities that really light you up. Notice any patterns that show up, or any activities you’ve forgotten about or let go.

 

Send me an email (sam[at]behappyhealthyhuman[dot]com) or leave a comment below to tell me what activities and situations are most likely to give you more energy in your day. 

 

You can also share your experience with other members of our Happy Healthy Human community in our private Facebook groupYour experience might bring you or someone else exactly the inspiration needed to take the next step. Thank you for sharing!

 

In my next post, we’ll dive in to how to actually fit these activities into your day, so that you can actually make these deposits in your energy bank, and be even more present and loving for your family.

 

This post originally appeared in my weekly newsletter – a Sunday morning email that shares mindful moments, health tips, and interesting news to make you smile. Sign up to receive yours, and be sure to share with a friend! 

 

 

  Thanks for reading, and have a wonderful day,   samantha attard sig

 


samantha attard happy healthy humanSamantha Attard, PhD, is the founder of Happy Healthy Human. Sam is a performance coach and yoga instructor who helps people eat, move, and live with intention. Learn more here.

 

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Use this yoga sequence to boost your energy

yoga twist photo 1

Have you ever returned from your vacation more tired than when you left?

That was my experience when I returned home this last weekend. I had a wonderful and whirlwind trip – first presenting my research at the American Heart Association conference in Baltimore, and then traveling to Buffalo, my hometown, to celebrate my cousin’s wedding. There was a lot of dancing, and it was a great weekend of family and friends. But this year more than others in the past, late flights, late nights, and Daylights Savings Time completely knocked me on my butt. Combined with a particularly long list of work tasks, I knew I needed to get myself out of my rut, and fast.

 

Battling a foggy brain haze, I turned to my yoga mat to wake me back up again. When I got to my mat (relieved to not be doing yoga in a hotel room!), I knew that twisting poses were the way to go because they are great for boosting your energy while relieving stress.
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Being Happy and Healthy At Work

Healthy at Work Photo
Image Courtesy of startupstockphotos.com

Last week, I spent a few hours working at my local grocery co-op in the middle of the day. During that time, I had a range of people occupying the seats next to me. Now, I wasn’t trying to listen in on everyone’s conversations, but it became apparent very quickly that there was a theme to many of the discussions: just about everyone was focusing on work, and just about everyone was had a pretty negative story to tell.
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Increasing energy levels at work

Low energy sleeping at work
Photo courtesy of The Guardian

What goes up must come down – including energy. We love our energy highs, when we are ready to take on the world, are super productive, and feel great. Those energy lows though? Not so much. Instead we complain, berate ourselves for not feeling our best, and try to find any solution to increase our energy.

Some of our solutions, however, are really band-aids: they’re not fixing our low energy problem, they’re just covering it up for a while. These band-aid solutions, like caffeine and sugar, make you feel good for a little while, but there is usually an energy crash that follows. And while sugar and caffeine are not inherently bad, if they come wrapped in a 400-calorie package, or are being used as a constant crutch to support waning energy, the negative effects can be larger than just that one-time energy crash.

So today, when your energy starts to decrease, and you’re ready to find the nearest quick fix to bring you back up, consider some of these tips instead, which address the root cause of your low energy. These sustainable systems to increase your energy have no negative side-effects, and can help you feel better, work better, and smile!

Tips to increase energy levels at work

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How to start making healthy choices

Building healthier choices into your life can be a daunting task. There’s exercising every day, getting enough sleep every day, feeding your family right every day. None of these goals are easy to achieve, and particularly are hard to implement every single day. Because we phrase our goals in this way, it can be difficult to even imagining incorporating these practices into our current routine.

In chemistry, in our bodies, and in our lives, every action needs activation energy. Activation energy is a term used in chemistry for the really high amount of energy that chemical reactions need to get started. After the activation energy is reached, similar to pushing a rock up a hill, the reaction tumbles forward, and your energy to remain in that state plateaus at a normal, stable level. In chemistry, requiring high activation energy is a matter of protection! You don’t want things firing off all the time, making molecules, breaking apart, disrupting the balance. There has to be a clear and strong call to action before the infantry in your body get moving.
Activation energy

When it comes to the decisions we make every day, that high activation energy can stop us from taking the first step towards reaching our lifestyle goals.
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